Welcome to your Madeira travel guide, providing everything you need to know about visiting the island of Madeira in Portugal. Madeira has stunning natural landscapes and a sub-tropical climate, and is close in proximity to the Canary Islands.

A collage of pictures of a woman on a beach in Madeira.
Madeira Travel Guide
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I spent a week travelling around Madeira in summer 2023, and what an amazing week it was. Travelling all around the island, I crammed as much into one week as possible, visiting all of the main towns, sampling the local cuisine, going on levada walks and meeting the locals. It was a solo trip, but Madeira is also ideal for couples and families.

I have split this guide into 11 sections. You can use the links below to jump to each section, or scroll through them in order.

  1. Madeira Overview
  2. Best time to visit Madeira
  3. Getting to Madeira
  4. Things to do and see in Madeira
  5. Cuisine in Madeira
  6. Map of Madeira
  7. Where to stay in Madeira
  8. Itineraries for Madeira
  9. Safety and practical tips
  10. Etiquette and culture
  11. Best tours in Madeira
  12. FAQs for Madeira Travel Guide

I have also included a complete list of all my Maderia travel guide posts at the bottom of this article.

Madeira Travel Guide

In a hurry? Here are some Madeira quick links:

Read on for my full Madeira travel guide and photos.

1. Overview of Madeira.

Madeira is an archipelago composed of the main island of Madeira, plus Porto Santo, and two groups of uninhabited islands. The main island, also known as Madeira Island, is the largest and most visited of the archipelago. It is renowned for its lush green mountains, volcanic landscapes, beautiful coastline, and vibrant capital city, Funchal.

Practical information about Madeira:

  • Time zone: GMT +2
  • Currency: Euro (EUR)
  • Language: Portuguese
  • Power Adaptors: Type F
  • Flight time from London: 3 hours 50 minutes.

Geography and Landscape

  • Volcanic Origin: Madeira is of volcanic origin, which contributes to its dramatic landscapes, including steep cliffs, deep valleys, and rugged mountains.
  • Varied Topography: The island boasts a diverse topography, from coastal areas with sandy beaches to mountainous regions with terraced hillsides and dense forests.
  • Laurissilva Forest: Madeira is home to a UNESCO-listed Laurissilva Forest, a primeval laurel forest that is a living remnant of the Tertiary period, covering much of the island’s interior.

Natural Wonders

  • Levadas: These irrigation channels have been repurposed into hiking trails, known as levada walks. They offer a unique way to explore the island’s interior and experience its stunning landscapes. Read more about levadas.
  • Sea Cliffs: Madeira features impressive sea cliffs, including Cabo Girão, one of the highest cliffs in Europe. The views from these cliffs are nothing short of breathtaking.
  • Natural Pools: The coastline is dotted with natural swimming pools formed by volcanic rock, providing unique and safe swimming experiences.


  • Endemic Species: Madeira is home to many endemic plant species due to its isolation. The Laurissilva Forest, for instance, is full of unique plant life. I recommend hiking through this forest at least once during your trip.
  • Birdwatching: The island is a hotspot for birdwatching, with species such as the Madeira Firecrest and the Trocaz Pigeon.

Cultural Heritage

  • Local Traditions: Madeira has a celebrated cultural heritage, with traditional festivals, music, and crafts playing a significant role in daily life.
  • Wine Culture: The island is famous for its fortified wine, Madeira wine, which has a history dating back centuries. Wine production and vineyard terraces are integral to the island’s culture. Also look out for the ‘poncha’ local drink.
A view of a valley with mountains and ocean in the background in Madeira.
View from upper levada

2. Best time to visit Madeira.

This part of my Madeira travel guide talks about weather and tourist seasons in Madeira.

Madeira has a mild subtropical climate, making it a year-round destination.

Here’s a breakdown of the different seasons to help you decide when to visit Madeira:

Spring (March to May):

  • Spring is considered one of the best times to visit Madeira.
  • The weather is pleasant, with average temperatures ranging from 17°C to 22°C (63°F to 72°F).
  • This is the season of blooming flowers, particularly the famous Madeira flowers that give the island its nickname, “The Flower Island.”
  • It’s less crowded compared to the peak summer months.

Summer (June to August):

  • Summer is the peak tourist season in Madeira.
  • Average temperatures range from 21°C to 26°C (70°F to 79°F).
  • It’s the perfect time for beach activities and water sports due to warmer ocean temperatures.
  • This is when festivals and events, such as the Madeira Wine Festival and Atlantic Festival, take place.

Autumn (September to November):

  • Autumn is another popular time to visit.
  • The weather remains pleasant, with average temperatures ranging from 18°C to 24°C (64°F to 75°F).
  • It’s the grape harvest season, and wine-related events are common.
  • The island’s landscapes are still lush, and you can enjoy outdoor activities without the summer crowds.

Winter (December to February):

  • Winter in Madeira is mild, with average temperatures ranging from 15°C to 20°C (59°F to 68°F).
  • While not as warm as the other seasons, it’s still comfortable for exploring.
  • It’s a great time for hiking and cultural activities.
  • Winter is also the holiday season, with festive events and decorations in towns and cities.
Pico Ruivo at Sunset
Madeira travel guide: Pico Ruivo at Sunset

Additional Tips

  • If you prefer a quieter experience with fewer tourists, consider visiting during the shoulder seasons of spring and autumn.
  • Keep in mind that Madeira’s weather can be unpredictable due to its mountainous terrain. It’s advisable to pack layers, including a light jacket, even during the warmer months.

Further reading: The Best Time to visit Madeira Island, Portugal.

3. Getting to Madeira.

Getting to Madeira involves primarily air travel, due to its island location. Madeira has one major airport, Cristiano Ronaldo Madeira International Airport (FNC), also known as Funchal Airport.

Here’s how you can get to Madeira:

By Air:

  1. International Flights: Many major airlines operate flights to Madeira from various European cities. Direct flights are available from cities such as Lisbon, Porto, London, Manchester, Frankfurt, Amsterdam, and more.
  2. Connecting Flights: If there are no direct flights from your location, you can connect through major European airports such as Lisbon, Porto, or Lisbon, which offer regular flights to Madeira.

Airport Transportation:

  1. Taxi: Taxis are readily available at the airport. They provide a convenient way to reach your accommodation directly.
  2. Airport Shuttle: Many hotels offer airport shuttle services for their guests. Check with your accommodation provider in advance to arrange this service.
  3. Car Rental: Car rental agencies are located at the airport. Renting a car can provide you with flexibility to explore the island on your own. My personal favourite is Discover Cars – a car comparison website so you know you are always getting the best deals.

By Sea:

  1. Cruise Ships: Some cruise lines include Madeira as a port of call. Funchal has a cruise port that accommodates cruise ships from various destinations.

Travel Tips:

  1. Visa and Documentation: Check the visa requirements for Portugal (if applicable for your nationality). European Union citizens do not require a visa for short stays.
  2. Booking in Advance: Given Madeira’s popularity, it’s recommended to book flights and accommodations well in advance, especially during peak seasons.
  3. Weather Delays: While rare, adverse weather conditions can occasionally impact flights to and from Madeira, particularly during the winter months. Be prepared for the possibility of delays.
  4. Transportation within Madeira: While on the island, you can use local buses, taxis, or rent a car to get around and explore the different areas.
A path leading to the top of a mountain in Madeira.
From Pico Do Arieiro to Pico Ruivo

4. Things to do and see in Madeira.

This part of my Madeira travel guide is about what to do and see when you are in Madeira.

Levada Walks: Explore the island’s unique irrigation channels turned hiking trails. Levada walks offer scenic routes through forests, valleys, and mountains, such as the Levada do Caldeirão Verde, Levada Moinho and Levada das 25 Fontes.

Visit the Laurissilva Forest: This UNESCO World Heritage-listed forest is a natural wonder. Wander through ancient trees, lush foliage, and endemic flora.

Cabo Girão Skywalk: Walk on the glass-floored platform extending from a sea cliff. Enjoy panoramic views of the Atlantic Ocean and coastline.

Explore Funchal: Discover the capital city’s historic architecture, vibrant markets, and charming streets. Visit the Sé Cathedral and the Mercado dos Lavradores (Farmers’ Market).

Funchal cable car
Funchal cable car

Monte Palace Tropical Garden: Immerse yourself in beautiful botanical gardens showcasing exotic plants and sculptures.

Whale and Dolphin Watching: Join boat tours to spot these majestic marine creatures in their natural habitat.

Madeira Wine Cellars: Visit wineries to learn about the island’s famous fortified wine. Enjoy wine tastings and tours.

Pico do Arieiro: Drive or hike to this viewpoint, offering breathtaking vistas of the island’s interior and neighbouring peaks.

Santana’s A-Frame Houses: Explore the traditional triangular houses in Santana village, providing insight into Madeira’s architectural heritage.

Natural Pools: Enjoy a refreshing swim in Madeira’s natural volcanic rock pools, such as the Porto Moniz Natural Pools.

Museums and Cultural Sites: Visit the Madeira Story Centre, Quinta das Cruzes Museum, and other cultural institutions to learn about the island’s history and heritage.

Botanical Gardens: Explore various botanical gardens, such as the Madeira Botanical Garden and Palheiro Gardens, showcasing diverse plant species

Further reading: 25 Unique & Amazing Things to do on Madeira Island.

5. Cuisine in Madeira.

No Madeira travel guide would be complete without a mention of Madeiran cuisine!

Madeiran cuisine is a fusion of traditional Portuguese flavours and unique local ingredients influenced by the island’s geography and history. A visit to a local market is a must.

Further reading: Visiting the Mercado dos Lavradores Funchal (Madeira)

Here are some highlights of Madeiran cuisine:

  • Espada com Banana (Black Scabbardfish with Banana): This iconic dish combines black scabbardfish, a deep-sea fish found in Madeira’s waters, with bananas. The contrast of the fish’s rich flavour and the sweetness of the bananas creates a unique and delicious combination.
  • Bolo do Caco: A traditional Madeiran bread, bolo do caco is round and flat, often served with garlic butter. It’s perfect as an accompaniment to meals or as a snack.
  • Milho Frito: Made from cornmeal, milho frito is a crispy fried dish similar to polenta. It’s often served as a side dish or even a main course, accompanied by meat or vegetables.
  • Espetada: These are skewers of marinated and grilled beef or pork, usually served with a side of bolo do caco or salad.
  • Lapas: Grilled limpets, a type of mollusc, are a popular starter in Madeira. They are often seasoned with garlic, butter, and lemon.
  • Sopa de Tomate e Cebola (Tomato and Onion Soup): This hearty soup is a comfort food made with tomatoes, onions, and sometimes potatoes. It’s often served with a poached egg on top.
  • Sorriso: Sorriso is a sweet pastry filled with sweet potato and often flavoured with cinnamon and vanilla.
  • Passion Fruit Pudding: Madeira’s tropical climate allows for the cultivation of passion fruit, which is used to make delightful puddings and desserts.
  • Poncha: This traditional Madeiran cocktail is made with aguardente (a local sugarcane-based spirit), honey, sugar, and citrus juices. It’s a popular drink to enjoy in local bars and restaurants.
  • Madeira Wine: Of course, you can’t miss the opportunity to taste the island’s famous fortified wine. The wine is aged using a unique process called estufagem, resulting in rich flavours and aromas.
  • Fresh Seafood: Given its island location, Madeira offers an array of fresh seafood, including octopus, squid, and various fish, often prepared in simple yet delicious ways.
  • Traditional Desserts: Madeira boasts a range of traditional sweets like honey cakes, bolos de mel, and queijadas, which are sweet cheese tarts. 

Further reading: Food in Madeira: What to Eat and Drink on Madeira Island

6. Madeira Travel Guide Map.

The Google map below shows the island of Madeira. Click the blue icons to see more information about each place, or click the star to add to your own Google Maps. I will also include a map showing hotels in Madeira further down in this Madeira travel guide.

7. Where to stay in Madeira.

Below is an abridged version of my main Where to stay in Madeira post. You may also be interested in 14 of the Best Hotels in Madeira and My Review of the Savoy Saccharum resort & Spa Madeira.

Consider the following towns when deciding where to stay in Madeira. I have included links which will take you to Booking.com if you would like to check prices. Click here to see all availability in Madeira.

a. Funchal

The capital city offers a wide range of accommodations, from luxury hotels to budget-friendly options. Funchal is bustling with restaurants, shops, and cultural attractions, making it a convenient base for exploring. It’s also a great choice if you want a mix of city life and coastal beauty. See prices and availability for Funchal.

Further reading: 29 Wonderful Things to do in Funchal, Madeira.

b. Calheta

This area is known for its golden sandy beach and is a great pick for those seeking a more relaxed and beach-oriented vacation. I stayed in Calheta in 2023 and wrote a review of the Savoy Saccharum Resort & Spa.

Calheta offers a selection of hotels and self-catering accommodations. See prices and availability for Calheta.

Further Reading: 18 Great Things to do in Calheta.

An aerial view of a beach and cliffs.
Praia Da Calheta

c. São Vicente

If you’re interested in exploring Madeira’s natural beauty, São Vicente offers a serene atmosphere nestled amidst mountains and valleys. It’s a great choice for nature lovers and hikers. See prices and availability for São Vicente.

d. Porto Moniz

Famous for its natural swimming pools, Porto Moniz is a picturesque coastal village. It’s an ideal spot for a peaceful getaway and is known for its unique volcanic landscapes. See prices and availability for Porto Moniz.

Further reading: 16 Excellent Things to do in Porto Moniz, Madeira.

e. Machico

This historic town is close to the airport and offers a beautiful beach, making it convenient for a short stay or if you want easy access to transportation. See prices and availability for Machico.

f. Santana

Known for its charming A-frame houses and lush green surroundings, Santana provides a tranquil rural experience. See prices and availability for Santana.

g. Ponta do Sol

This sunny village is perfect if you’re looking for a quiet, laid-back atmosphere. It offers stunning sunsets and a peaceful ambiance. See prices and availability for Ponta do Sol.

h. Câmara de Lobos

A traditional fishing village with a vibrant local atmosphere, Câmara de Lobos is an excellent choice for experiencing authentic Madeiran culture. See prices and availability for Câmara de Lobos.

A group of boats on a beach.
Camara des Lobos

i. Ribeira Brava

This coastal town offers a mix of local life, historical sites, and beautiful sea views. I found it quite s imilar to Funchal but a lot less busy and with more of a local feel. See prices and availability for Ribeira Brava.

j. Ponta Delgada

Located on the north coast, Ponta Delgada is a small village known for its natural beauty and quietness. See prices and availability for Ponta Delgada.

Further reading: The 14 Best Hotels in Madeira, Portugal.

Accommodation in Madeira

Here is a map from Booking.com showing hotels by location. You can zoom in, zoom out, drag and move the map. If you click the map, it will take you to Booking.com where you can look more closely at your options.


I recommend reserving your room immediately to get the best price. It’s usually free to reserve, and you can always cancel later on. See the main Madeira page from Booking.com.

Booking links

Here are your booking links again, all in one place. These links will get you the best prices on Booking.com today:

Hotels in Funchal | Hotels in Calheta | Hotels in São Vicente | Hotels in Porto Moniz | Hotels in Machico | Hotels in Santana | Hotels in Ponta do Sol | Hotels in Câmara de Lobos | Hotels in Ribeira Brava | Hotels in Ponta Delgada | All hotels in Madeira.

Further reading: The 20 best towns in Madeira (and where to stay in each one)

8. Itineraries for Madeira

My 7 day itinerary for Madeira East features Funchal, Santana, São Jorge, Ponta de São Lourenço, Machico, Porto da Cruz, and a levada walk of your choosing.

My 7 day itinerary for Madeira West features Funchal, Cabo Girão
, Ribeira Brava, Ponta do Sol
, Calheta, Jardim do Mar
, Paul do Mar, Porto Moniz
, São Vicente, Seixal
 and a levada walk of your choosing.

My 12 day coastal Madeira itinerary features Funchal, Machico, Ponta de São Lourenço, Porto da Cruz, Santana, Sao Jorge, Sao Vicente, Seixal, Porto Moniz, Levada Grande, Ponto do Pargo, Paul do Mar, Jardim do Mar, Calheta, Ponto do Sol, Ribeira Brava, Camara do Lobos and Cabo Girao.

Further reading: 16 Excellent Things to do in Porto Moniz, Madeira.

9. Safety and practical tips for Madeira.

Madeira is generally a safe island, but it’s always important to be aware of your surroundings and keep an eye on your belongings, especially in crowded tourist areas.

If you are worried about safety during your trip to Madeira, here are some of my travel safety recommendations from Amazon:

Health and Safety:

  1. Medical Services: Madeira has quality medical facilities, but travel insurance is crucial to cover any unexpected health issues.
  2. Sun Protection: The sun can be strong in Madeira. Wear sunscreen, a hat, and sunglasses to protect yourself from sunburn.
  3. Terrain Awareness: The island’s terrain can be steep and challenging. Wear appropriate footwear and be cautious when walking in hilly areas.


  1. Driving: If you plan to rent a car in Madeira, note that Madeira’s roads can be narrow and winding. Drive cautiously, and be aware of steep drops in some areas.
  2. Public Transportation: Madeira’s bus system is reliable for getting around. Be sure to check the bus schedules in advance.
  3. Taxis: Taxis are safe and regulated. Ensure the meter is running or agree on a fare before starting the ride.

Money and Communication:

  1. Currency: The currency used in Madeira is the Euro (€).
  2. ATMs: ATMs are widely available, especially in tourist areas. Inform your bank before travelling to ensure your cards work abroad.
  3. Language: Portuguese is the official language of Madeira. While many locals in tourist areas speak English, learning a few basic Portuguese phrases can enhance your experience. This Lonely Planet Portuguese Phrase Book & Dictionary is excellent (Amazon link).
Traditional houses in Santana Madeira
Traditional houses in Santana

Outdoor Activities:

  1. Levada Walks: If you plan to hike the levadas, wear sturdy shoes, carry water, and check the weather forecast. Some walks can be challenging. Check my experience of levadas Moinho and Nova, plus Best 16 levada walks in Madeira.
  2. Swimming: While there are natural pools and beaches, always follow safety signs and guidelines when swimming in the ocean.
  3. Madeira tourist card: Consider purchasing a Madeira Tourist Card, which provides discounted access to various attractions and unlimited use of public transportation.

Further reading: 25 Unique & Amazing Things to do on Madeira Island.

Emergency Contacts:

  • Emergency Services: Dial 112 for police, medical, or fire emergencies.

Environmental Considerations:

  1. Responsible Tourism: Respect the island’s natural beauty by not littering and following designated paths.
  2. Conservation: Be cautious around delicate ecosystems, especially in natural parks and reserves.
A rocky shore with a blue sky and a red house.
Porto Moniz Natural pools

10. Etiquette and culture in Madeira.

Madeiran culture is warm and welcoming.

Here are some customs and etiquette tips to keep in mind:

Greetings and Politeness:

  1. Greetings: When meeting people, a friendly “Good morning” (bom dia), “Good afternoon” (boa tarde), or “Good evening” (boa noite) is appreciated.
  2. Politeness: Courtesy is highly valued. Use “please” (por favor) and “thank you” (obrigado/obrigada) generously.

Dress Code:

  1. Churches: When visiting churches or religious sites, dress modestly. Avoid wearing beachwear or revealing clothing. I recommend a scarf like this one to cover up.
  2. Smart Casual: In more formal places, such as upscale restaurants or events, smart casual attire is appropriate.

Dining Etiquette:

  1. Meal Times: Lunch is typically between 12:30 PM and 2:30 PM, and dinner is around 7:30 PM to 9:30 PM.
  2. Table Manners: Keep your hands visible on the table, and avoid putting your elbows on it.
  3. Tipping: Tipping is not obligatory, but rounding up the bill or leaving a small tip (around 10%) is appreciated for good service.


  1. Language: While English is spoken in tourist areas, learning a few basic Portuguese phrases, such as greetings and polite expressions, can show respect and enhance your interactions. This Lonely Planet Portuguese Phrase Book & Dictionary is excellent.
  2. Volume: Loud talking or laughing in public places, especially in more quiet surroundings, may be considered impolite.

Local Culture:

  1. Personal Space: Respect personal space when interacting with locals. Maintain an appropriate distance during conversations.
  2. Gestures: The thumbs-up gesture, while common in many places, can sometimes be considered rude in Madeira. Use a nod or a smile instead.
  3. Queueing: Britons are known for their love of orderly queues, and this holds true in Madeira as well. Wait your turn patiently in lines.

Gifts and Social Interaction:

  1. Gift Giving: If invited to a local’s home, it’s polite to bring a small gift like flowers or a box of chocolates.
  2. Punctuality: Arriving a bit late is often acceptable, but try not to be excessively tardy, especially for formal events.

Further reading: 20 Gifts and Souvenirs to Buy From Madeira.

Religious Sites and Customs:

  1. Churches: When entering churches, dress modestly, maintain a respectful demeanour and avoid loud conversations. I recommend a scarf like this one to cover up in churches.
  2. Religious Festivals: If you’re visiting during a religious festival, show sensitivity to the local customs and traditions.
A view of a mountain with yellow flowers and a view of the ocean.
View from Pico do Arieiro

11. Best tours in Madeira.

1. Sunrise Self-Guided Hike from Pico do Arieiro to Pico Ruivo: To save you the hassle of organising transport, the trip includes hotel pickup, then drop-off at Pico do Arieiro, and pickup from Achada do Teixeira once you’ve finished the hike.

2. Full-Day Madeira North West Coast Safari from Funchal: Take the scenic route between Ribeira Brava and Porto Moniz in an open-top safari vehicle; enjoy spectacular views of the Cabo Girão sea cliffs, Veu da Noiva waterfall, and the Paul da Serra plateau.

3. East of Madeira | Full Day 4×4 Tour: Travelling by 4WD, venture off-road and escape the crowds as you drive the Pico do Areiro mountain roads, stop in villages such as Ribeiro Frio and Faial, and visit a traditional A-frame house in Santana.

4. Half-Day Wine Tour in Madeira: Wonderful wine trail through the Laurissilva forest with wine and tapas included.

5. Private Dolphin and Whale Watching Tour in Madeira: 2- to 4-hour private charter by motor yacht. Snorkel and spot marine life including whales and dolphins. Light refreshments and a glass of sparkling wine included.

View all Madeira tours on Viator here. You can reserve tours immediately without paying anything up front, and cancel for free. Viator is a TripAdvisor company, so you know you will get a good service.

12. Madeira Travel Guide FAQs.

Here are some common frequently asked questions when people are searching for a Madeira travel guide on Google.

Q: What is Madeira known for?

A: Madeira is renowned for its stunning landscapes, lush vegetation, diverse flora and fauna, rich history, vibrant festivals, and its famous fortified wine.

Q: When is the best time to visit Madeira?

A: Madeira enjoys a mild climate year-round. Spring (March to May) and fall (September to November) offer pleasant temperatures and fewer crowds, making them popular times to visit.

Further reading: The Best Time to visit Madeira Island, Portugal.

Q: How do I get to Madeira?

A: Madeira is accessible by air. The Madeira Airport (FNC) is the main international gateway, with flights connecting to major European cities.

Q: Do I need a visa to visit Madeira?

A: If you’re an EU citizen, you don’t need a visa for short stays. Non-EU citizens should check the visa requirements specific to their nationality.

Q: What are Levada walks?

A: Levadas are narrow irrigation channels that wind through Madeira’s landscapes. Levada walks are hiking trails that follow these channels, offering scenic routes through forests, valleys, and mountains.

Further reading: 16 of the Best Levada Walks on Madeira Island

Q: What is the currency used in Madeira?

A: The official currency is the Euro (EUR).

Q: Is English widely spoken in Madeira?

A: Yes, English is widely spoken in tourist areas. Portuguese is the official language, but many locals also speak Spanish and other languages.

Q: What are the must-try dishes in Madeira?

A: Don’t miss out on tasting “Espada com Banana” (black scabbardfish with banana), “Bolo do Caco” (traditional bread), and indulging in local wines. Read more about Madeira food and drink.

Q: How can I explore the island’s attractions?

A: Renting a car is a popular option for flexibility. Alternatively, you can join guided tours, use public transportation, or walk around towns and cities. To rent a car, book through Discover Cars and pick up your car at Funchal airport, or in the city centre.

Further reading: 25 Unique & Amazing Things to do on Madeira Island.

Q: Are there any safety precautions I should be aware of?

A: Madeira is generally safe for tourists. However, take care while hiking on trails, especially in remote areas, and be cautious while swimming in the sea due to strong currents.

Q: What festivals can I experience in Madeira?

A: Madeira hosts numerous festivals, including Carnival, Flower Festival, and New Year’s fireworks. Check the event calendar to plan your visit accordingly.

Q: What are some popular souvenirs to buy in Madeira?

A: Look for Madeira wine, embroidery, traditional wickerwork, local crafts, and souvenirs depicting the island’s natural beauty.

Further reading: 20 Gifts and Souvenirs to Buy From Madeira.

Q: Can I pay with credit cards in Madeira?

A: Yes, credit cards are widely accepted in hotels, restaurants, and shops. However, it’s advisable to carry some cash for smaller establishments.

Q: Are there any eco-friendly practices I should follow in Madeira?

A: Yes, Madeira places a strong emphasis on sustainability. Use eco-friendly products, avoid littering, and participate in responsible tourism activities.

Q: How can I find accommodation in Madeira?

A: You can book accommodations through various platforms online, such as hotels, guesthouses, and vacation rentals. Plan in advance, especially during peak seasons. I recommend using Booking.com as it has free cancellation and you can reserve your room for free too. See all Madeira accommodation on Booking.com.

Further reading: The 14 Best Hotels in Madeira, Portugal.

Q: What is the tipping etiquette in Madeira?

A: Tipping is appreciated but not obligatory. Leaving a 5-10% tip at restaurants or for exceptional service is common.

A stream runs along the side of a mountain.
Levada do Norte

Q: Is tap water safe to drink in Madeira?

A: Yes, tap water is safe to drink in Madeira. It is of high quality and meets European standards.

Q: Can I use my mobile phone in Madeira?

A: Yes, most international mobile networks work in Madeira. Check with your provider for roaming options.

Q: Where can I see street art in Madeira?

A: Santa Maria Street in Funchal is widely known for its painted doors and street art.

Further reading: How to See Street Art in Santa Maria Street, Funchal.

Q: What are some lesser-known attractions in Madeira?

A: Explore Ponta de São Lourenço, visit the Monte Palace Tropical Garden, or discover the charming village of Curral das Freiras. Read more about things to see in Madeira.

Q: How can I learn more about Madeira’s history and culture?

A: Visit museums like the Madeira Story Centre or explore historical sites such as Sé Cathedral and São Tiago Fortress.

Q: What emergency numbers should I be aware of in Madeira?

A: In case of emergencies, dial 112, which is the European emergency number, for police, medical, or fire assistance.

Below are some helpful links for your trip:

  • Booking.com is the best site for booking hotels with free reservation and cancellations.
  • Viator is the best site for original tours and activities.
  • Read my Top 20 Travel Essentials I Can’t Travel Without before going anywhere!
  • Click here for a list of 20 excellent travel books to read on your holidays.
  • World Nomads travel insurance policies offer coverage for more than 150 activities. Get a quote, make a claim, or buy or extend your policy while on the road.

Here is a complete list of all my Madeira travel guide posts.  

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